Patrick Delaforce & Ken Baldry

'The Delaforce Family History' - Introduction II

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"They that do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.
That which was tragedy the first time will be farce the second" Karl Marx

Introduction to Second Edition

by Ken Baldry

In about 1980, Volume One of Patrick Delaforce’s ‘Family History Research - The French Connection’ was published. Ken Baldry's maternal aunt bought copies for all the family, as her name is Winifred Dullforce, which she thought was a possible anglicisation & contraction of De La Force. Although Ken is keenly interested in history & has hundreds of history books, he was under the impression at that time that Dullforce was derived from Dolfuss, a Germanic name. For a musician & mountaineer, imbued with German culture & speaking the language after a fashion, this was an attractive prospect. For the older members of the family with experience of two World Wars, it was not.

He did glance at the book but Patrick's publishers had pressured him into a mistake of presentation - the first & very lengthy chapter was a list of all the sources he had consulted &, for someone who had not taken much interest in the subject of genealogy, except, thankfully, to pin his grandmother down to helping him make a family tree when she was in her eighties, this chapter was somewhat adversive. Ken put the book on the appropriate shelf & forgot it. In this edition of Volume Two, he has pushed the similar source material into appendices.

All this changed in February 2000. Ken returned from skiing to receive an e-mail message from Terry Dullforce, someone of who’s existence he had been unaware & whom he had & has never met. However, his cousin’s husband is keenly interested in genealogy & had circulated other members of the Dullforce family with everyone’s e-mail addresses. Terry’s father had died & among his papers was evidence that our mutual great-great-great grand-father, James Dullforce, was the son of William Delforce.

William Delforce features in Patrick’s book.

Suddenly, Ken had his maternal family tree back into the 14th Century & meanwhile, his interest in genealogy had been kindled by trying to help his wife to find her roots. (Her maiden name is Saltsman, which was originally Saltzmann, something she discovered in 1996 but that is another story available on the Internet).

Volume One was out-of-print, so Ken wrote to Patrick to ask if he might put it on the Internet’s World Wide Web. As a somewhat retired computer professional, Ken kept his hand in as a webmaster & had soon discovered that people will read almost anything on the Web. Patrick welcomed his suggestion & he found that he had yet another retirement job, protecting Patrick from importunate Force family members world-wide, as he had also joined the ‘Rootsweb’ mailing list for both the Force family & the Huguenots. He set up a ‘Force Scrapbook’ of hopefully useful information, on the Web. He also sought his father’s family & was similarly given a vast amount of information after one simple piece of research. Believeing he owed it to everyone to put some work in himself, he started a Web-based Baldry Family History Society, which has been very successful but that again, is another story.

Patrick gave Volume One an Introduction intended to serve for the whole book, so it had intriguing ‘tasters’ of what would appear in Volume Two but Volume Two did not appear. Patrick & Ken remained in contact, as Ken used the web site to advertise Patrick's other books. Ken has bought several & Patrick has given him others. They are military histories of World War II & very valuable, as they are extremely detailed & draw on his own experience with the Royal Tank Regiment. Ken hinted that he would be interested in seeing his sketches for Volume Two but Patrick said he had passed them on to a cousin. Ken requested an introduction to the cousin but one was not forthcoming, so he did not press the matter. He did believe that Patrick was better occupied with the military history than the family stuff.

However, he did follow up his clues in a desultory manner, when he had spare time from his other retirement jobs. He proceded by collecting as much information as he could about the family trees of the people mentioned in Patrick’s clues & trying to fit them together in a coherent manner. Being who he was, he also published them on the Web, hoping (without success) that someone might e-mail him with a startling revelation of the relationships. Ken let Patrick know this occasionally by sending him ‘nuggets’ among other news.

In June 2003, Ken & his wife visited Gascony to see the family villages & towns as, by this time, they knew much about the doings of the various Merovingians, Gascons and Visigoths of the Delaforce blood line. This provided as many questions as answers, which he followed up when they returned. One fact was that one of the many Grandpa Bernards had built the ‘new’ (1491) castle at Fourcès, one of our deeper roots. Ken made a book of all the photographs from the Gascon trip, with his diary entries & material from the ‘Force Scrapbook’ & sent this to Patrick. He felt that this was the least he could do, in view of the fantastic amount of work Patrick had put into the volume Ken did know about.

To his astonished delight, Patrick wrote Ken an appreciative letter, covering a parcel containing a mass of material relating to Volume Two, including much of it in typescript. Having been trained as a child in the joys of delayed gratification, Ken immediately made up a book of all his material & sent it to Patrick before examining his. When he did, he found that he may have made a couple of mistakes in his research, which hopefully would have come out in the long run but that he was getting very warm indeed.

In order to put this material in the public domain as soon as possible, target Xmas 2003, he assembled Patrick's work and added his own as extra chapters by way of commentary on and extension of Patrick's text. He had also inserted ‘nuggets’, maps and photographs into Patrick’s text.

The chapter numbering there was not that of Patrick’s typescript. His started at Chapter 21 but Volume One has Chapters 20-23, which break up the story, as they contain information about foreign Delaforce families, while Chapters 2-19 gradually move back in time. Ken guessed that something urged Patrick to add the foreign information as an afterthought & to put Volume One to press at the time he did.

While completed on time, this two-volume interim edition was unsatisfactory in several ways: the two volumes overlapped; Ken's comments on Patrick's work were also in separate chapters which did not necessarily correct errors that the 20-year gap between the volumes had exposed; he had introduced errors of his own through haste to meet his deadline; he had hesitated to edit Patrick's text, as he did not have explicit permission to do so and the inevitably numerous digressions from the blood line followed, fascinating as they were, had not been clearly delineated. This edition attempts of eliminate these inconsistencies while introducing more extraneous material that caught his imagination!

Who is a Delaforce?

...or rather, Who is a proper Delaforce? In volume One, Patrick disposed of the Caumont family, who hijacked the name when they took over the village of La Force in Perigord. Unfortunately, correct spelling is a 20th century fad & before that, it was a casual art, exacerbated by the illiterate or the noble dictating to clerks, often in what the clerks may have thought a rough Gascon accent, who then wrote down what they thought they had heard. It is necessary to remember that French is an evolved Latin language, that the Visigoths arrived in the area of Gascony with a different evolved Latin, which became influenced by the completely non-Sanskrit-based Basque language. It cannot be emphasised too strongly that, dealing with Medieval documents, the possibility of errors of either interpretation or original production is sufficiently high for nothing in this volume after chapter 27 to be considered as reliable evidence about the Delaforce family although most of it is reliable history.

This is Patrick’s probability table for the detection of true Delaforces:-


100% sure


100% sure


100% sure


75% sure (there was a significant de la Fosse family in Normandy - ditches/drains, etc)


100% sure


65% sure


55% sure


35% sure


20% sure


20% sure (latin translation)


15% sure


15% sure


15% sure

Both authors had decided independently that the Provençale ‘De Fos’ family was nothing to do with them.

Patrick's original subtitle to volume One was 'The French Connection' & Ken's sub-title to volume Two was 'The European Dimension' because, apart from the wide-ranging diplomatic activity of some members, the catchment area of our blood line extends across Europe from Spain to Romania & parts of the Mediterranean littoral as well.

Who wrote what in this book is very obvious because of the differences of style. Patrick, the professional historian, presents the facts. Ken, the amateur, has his own agenda. A campaigning republican atheist with some governmental experience, he has largely written about the earlier periods, adding insights into the actions of our ancestors not usually found in history books and in a more colloquial style.

Even as late as 1000AD, we have 64,000,000,000 putative ancestors. This figure is about sixteen times the number of people (homo sapiens) who had ever lived before 1800, so we are almost certainly descended from everyone alive in at least Europe & much of the Middle East from that time, let alone the 4th century, back to which this book now extends, if not further.

So, let us enter the Delaforce Family History....

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Contact: Ken Baldry for more information, 17 Gerrard Road, Islington, London N1 8AY +44(0)20 7359 6294 but best to e-mail him
Last revised 19/10/2005 ©1980-2005 Patrick Delaforce & Ken Baldry. All rights reserved